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tv   ABC World News With Diane Sawyer  ABC  December 10, 2012 5:30pm-6:00pm PST

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should they go to jail for a joke? >> i don't think that anyone could have foreseen what was going to happen. and, take a look at this. baby strokes. watch the tiny infants backstroke all the way across the pool. how did they learn to do that? good evening. we begin with the biggest economic news today, for the american family budget. the price of gasoline is plunging. an announcement so dramatic, the experts are calling it the gas crash. late this afternoon, this is what the department of energy said. the average price of a gallon of gasoline has dropped 50 cents, in just two months. today, the average is $3.35 and it could drop even more before new years.
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abc's sharyn alfonsi is here to tell us how much and why. >> reporter: it's the type of crash motorists love. gas prices plummeting. in boston, $3.59. atlanta, $3.79. salt lake, $3.40, and l.a., $3.68. the trip home for the holidays just got a lot cheaper. >> i'm thrilled! i mean, i have to buy gas no matter what, so, the fact that it costs a little bit less is great. especially with christmas and everything coming up. >> reporter: prices began rebounding after the refinery problems were fixed. add to that, demand for gasoline down for winter. analyst now think gas prices could fall even further before new years eve. >> by christmas, we should have prices between $3.20 per gallon and $3.40 per gallon. >> reporter: the good news comes on the heels of a game-changing headline from the internal energy agency. they predict the u.s. will be energy independent by 2030. and become the world's largest
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exporter of oil, surpassing counties like saudi arabia, venezuela, nigeria and even iran. solar, wind and a backyard oil boom has changed the global landscape, and the landscape on our own backyards. we saw it first-hand in kansas. new technologies unearthing previously untapped oil reserves there and across the u.s. the effects already being felt well beyond the gas pump. >> this unconventional revolution in oil and natural gas is already having a big impact on the united states. it has created something like 1.7 million jobs in the last few years. >> reporter: and consider this. the economists at moody's tell us, if gas prices drop another 50 cents this year, it will create another 350,000 jobs by this time next year. and in the next few months, pending no major disruptions, we could seal our grocery bills and the cost of medicines, many of them made out of petroleum, come down, too. >> sharyn alfonsi, thank you so much. and now we turn to see, for
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the first time, the face of courage in the news. the navy s.e.a.l. who died in the daring rescue mission in afghanistan. the mission successfully freed a doctor who was part of a faith-based relief group. the price, a member of s.e.a.l. team 6. and abc's senior foreign affairs correspondent martha raddatz tells us now about the decision to send in the best. >> reporter: nicolas checque was just 28 years old, but for much of the last decade, he had been a navy s.e.a.l. the last five years, a part of the elite s.e.a.l. team 6. in iraq, afghanistan, wherever he was needed, checque carried out dangerous missions. just like the one that took his life on sunday. it was just before 3:00 a.m. when checque and his team, along with afghan commandos, loaded into helicopters and headed in the darkness to a remote mountaintop location in eastern afghanistan. down below, taliban fighters
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were holding dilip joseph, a relief worker and father of four from colorado, kidnapped leaving a rural medical clinic just days before. the hard-charging, highly trained s.e.a.l. team moved in quickly, to a group of huts where joseph was being held. gun fire broke out. joseph was rescued, but the young navy s.e.a.l. took a bullet to the head. the decision to go in so quickly was made by the top commander in afghanistan, general john allen, who thought joseph was in immediate danger. >> the race was on. because at that point, they knew if they couldn't get him before he was taken over the border into pakistan, that it would be almost impossible to rescue him. >> reporter: there have been hundreds of successful missions by the s.e.a.l.s, including the raid that killed osama bin laden. but the missions remain unpredictable and dangerous, as defense secretary leon panetta said today, "the special operators knew they were putting their lives on the line."
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the former hostage, dilip joseph, will likely return to the u.s. by this weekend. his family issued a statement tonight, extending their deepest condolences and gratitude to all those involved in the mission. diane? >> thank you so much, martha raddatz reporting in. and now, we go overseas to syria. the rebels still on the move, near the capital damascus. the assad regime, still corralling its chemical weapons. and abc's alex marquardt got a call to travel at night and meet with a defector, who knows about those weapons. a former general in the ruling regime. >> reporter: the rebels have taken the fight to syria's biggest cities. today, battling near assad's stronghold, his palace in damascus. while fighters have overrun one of the regime's largest military bases, outside the city of aleppo. american officials say they fear the likelihood of assad using chemical weapons is rising and say they have proof they've been prepared. we went to meet a man who shares those fears.
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driving along a dark, back country reed near turkey's border with syria. his name is adnan sillou. he told us that until 2008, he was a chief of staff in the chemical weapons program. he said he worked on the defense side, in charge of preparing troops for dealing with attacks and safety equipment. what specific chemical weapons does the assad regime have? he said, "they have mustard gas, along with the highly toxic nerve agents vx, sarin and tabun." the regime has started to fall and deteriorate, he argues. it's highly possible assad will start using chemical weapons to kill his own people. >> i think it's a last ditch effort and one that they don't want to use but are increasingly considering it. >> reporter: if the regime crumbles, the u.s. fears the weapons could be transferred to hezbollah, or fall into the hands of groups like al qaeda. knowing what you do about the facilities, the security, do you worry that these weapons will fall into the wrong hands?
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"yes," he said. "there's an extremely big concern they'll fall into other hands." sillou says he was interviewed by the cia when he left syria. now, he's pleading for the u.s. to give him money and weapons so that he can lead a brigade of fighters back into syria and secure those sites. diane? >> thank you so much, alex. now, we want to tell you the late news about a record fine against a prominent bank, after a startling series of charges. the british banking giant hsbc, about to pay big time. after allegations of money laundering, linked to iran and mexican drug cartels. "the new york times" reports a record settlement. $1.9 billion to be announced tomorrow. and now, a storm blasting the upper midwest of the united states. what a difference a week makes. it was a mild 62 degrees in minneapolis last week, and now a massive storm has dumped nearly 16 inches in the twin cities. more snow in one day than they
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expect in a month. it was a slippery, sliding mess on the roads. hundreds of snow-related car wrecks across both minnesota and wisconsin. and now, the news of the shocking death of a rising star in latin america, just about to receive her dream of taking on north american tv, right here on abc. singer jenni rivera died in a plane crash on her way to a concert in mexico. and here's abc's david wright on her turbulent life story and her huge success. ♪ >> reporter: she was known as the "diva of banda" -- mexico's answer to country music. today, on spanish language radio, tearful tributes to jenni rivera, after her private plane crashed yesterday en route to a concert. her california driver's license found in the wreckage. >> her death is a huge loss. she was a role model to many young latinas, having gone from
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rags to riches, being a self-made millionaire. >> reporter: in record sales alone here in the u.s., she was bigger than beyonce. i've heard her described as the mexican-american dolly parton? >> she was -- you know, she had curves. and she embraced those curves. that's what people loved about her. >> reporter: rivera had several popular reality shows, that promoted her as "the mama with lots of drama." shows that featured the whole family -- five kids and two grandkids. the osbournes of the barrio. >> she was a personality. she was a businesswoman. she was beginning to cross over into the english language market. >> reporter: abc was developing a comedy series around her, which would have introduced her to a whole new audience. now, sadly, many english speakers are just learning about her because of this outpouring of grief. david wright, abc news, los angeles. and we also have news tonight about a big breakthrough
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in the treatment of cancer, using hiv as a weapon against cancerous cells. the treatment is being presented now at the american society of hematology. only a dozen patients have tried it. but listen to what happened to one little girl. here's abc's chief health and medical editor, dr. richard besser. >> reporter: emma whitehead's leukemia seemed undefeatable. no treatments left. and she was only 6. then, in april, a last gamble. using hiv to cure, not kill. doctors took out millions of emma's disease-fighting white blood cells. then, used a genetically altered hiv virus, which is great at getting into human immune systems, to change those cells into targeted cancer fighters. emma's cells went back in and destroyed the cancer. dr. stephan grupp is a pioneer using hiv to infiltrate the immune system. >> all of the things that make the hiv virus able to cause disease have been removed from
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this particular virus, so, its only purpose is to put a gene into a cell. for me, it's incredibly exciting. >> reporter: here's emma, just eight months later. doctors can't find any remaining cancer cells. >> she is in a complete remission. she has no leukemia in her body by any test that we can do. even the most sensitive tests. >> she has a ton of energy. she's doing wonderful right now. >> this treatment was a miracle. >> reporter: emma is counting the days till christmas. her parents are busy counting their blessings. now, the treatment does wipe out part of her immune system, so, she has to receive medication once a week to prevent infection. but she's feeling strong and she's back in the second grade. >> oh, it's so wonderful to see her like that. what about the other of the dozen now, just one dozen, who had it? were they also successful? >> reporter: seven of them had a great response. three of them in complete remission. but not everyone. researchers are looking to see, why does it work in some but not in others?
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but the whole idea of using a virus to deliver treatment for a disease is absolutely fantastic. >> it is great and being presented now, as we said. thank you so much, rich. and still ahead here on "world news," a tearful apology, from the deejays behind that tragic royal prank. but was this stunt just the latest in a string by others that have gone too far? next. americans are always ready to work hard for a better future. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first. helping generations through tough times. good times. never taking a bailout. there when you need them. helping millions of americans over the centuries. the strength of a global financial leader. the heart of a one-to-one relationship. together for your future. ♪
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tonight, we're learning more about the australian deejays who have given a tearful apology for pretending to be royals. the prank call that prompted a tragedy. abc news has confirmed that their show has been canceled, but it turns out their station has drawn fire before, for pranks that pushed the boundaries. abc's cecilia vega on the news tonight. >> i wanted to just reach out to them and just give them a big hug and say sorry. >> reporter: the australian deejays behind that prank heard around the world have come out of hiding and told leading australian news magazine "a current affair" they want forgiveness and understanding. >> i don't think anyone could have expected or foreseen what was going to happen. >> hello, good morning, king edward vii hospital? >> oh, hello there, could i
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please speak to kate, please, my granddaughter. >> oh, yes, just hold on, ma'am. >> thank you. >> reporter: now, following the apparent suicide of that pranked nurse, jacintha saldanha, a mother of two, the deejays are facing global backlash. but will they actually face any legal charges? >> there's likely there's going to be a finding that they violated a state law about using a recording device. but it is very unlikely that they will be held criminally responsible for her death. >> reporter: here in australia, scotland yard has already contacted the police over the royal hoax. those deejays could face questioning. but they're already on trial in the court of public opinion. >> the thought that we may have played apart in this -- gut wrenching. >> reporter: their station has come under fire before. once, for convincing a woman her mother was injured and needed to go to the hospital. in another segment, where they tried to get a 14-year-old girl to talk about her sex life, wearing a lie detector, she revealed she'd been raped. this time around, higher ups
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approved the prank to kate middleton's hospital room. lawyers even vetted it. >> we're confident that we've broken no rules. >> i'm more worried about the family. and that's where the focus should be. >> reporter: a call for compassion, but is it coming too late? cecilia vega, abc news, sydney, australia. and, coming up next here, do not miss the water babies. 9 months old, already synchronized swimming? they are in our "instant index," splashing through tonight.
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of washington about the future of medicare and social security. anncr: but you deserve straight talk about the options on the... table and what they mean for you and your family. ancr: aarp is cutting through all the political spin. because for our 37 million members, only one word counts. get the facts at let's keep medicare... and social security strong for generations to come. very sore looking kinda blistery. it was like a red rash... like somebody had set a bag of hot charcoal on my neck. i was a firefighter for 24 years.
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but, i have never encountered such a burning sensation until i had the shingles. i remember it well. i was in the back yard doing yard work. i had this irritation going on in my lower neck. i changed shirts because i thought there was something in the collar of the shirt irritating my neck. and i couldn't figure out what was going on. i had no idea it came from chickenpox. i always thought shingles was associated with people... a lot older than myself. i can tell you from experience, it is bad. it's something you never want to encounter. for more of the inside story, visit
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and here's what bolted to the top of our "instant index" this monday. meet the lucky arizona man who won that $192 million in the lottery. he is 37-year-old matthew good, who finally came forward, saying he's not quitting his job at an electronics company. by the way, he and his wife are so concerned about the looming fiscal cliff, he's taking his money as a lump sum, in case those higher taxes arrive next year. and coming up now, a snapshot we could not resist. and so many of you tweeted it to me today. thank you very much. it's one very stylish little monkey in a winter coat, wandering through an ikea store in toronto. he started out in the parking lot after escaping his cage. a woman who spotted him said she thought she was going insane. then, the staff gently lured the
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monkey into the store, where it was captured and the owners have been found, fined and have some explaining to do. and, now, we turn to that video, the amazing swimming wonder twins. they are only 9 months old, too young to walk or talk, but look what ellie and william trykush can do in the water. they can already swim the entire length of a 25-foot pool, by themselves. the two of them were only 4 months old when they mother, a swim instructor, introduced them to the pool and noticed that they were not afraid to swim under water. and naturally knew how to hold their breath. the proof of happiness in their pictures, contented smiles on their baby faces. by the way, she would swim underneath them, watching them, to see how naturally they took to the water. and their father says he has his idea, that they're going to show up in the 2028 olympic games. and we really do want to hear
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what captures your imagination every day. keep tweeting me your thoughts for "instant index," @dianesawyer. and coming up next here, a veteran back from afghanistan, looking for a job, and with the help of our bob woodruff, a movie legend steps in to give him the surprise of a lifetime. there's the sign to the bullpen. here he comes. you wouldn't want your doctor doing your job, the pitch! whoa! so why are you doing his? only your doctor can determine if your persistent heartburn is actually something more serious like acid reflux disease. over time, stomach acid can damage the lining of your esophagus. for many, prescription nexium not only provides 24-hour heartburn relief, but can also help heal acid-related erosions in the lining of your esophagus. talk to your doctor about the risk for osteoporosis-related bone fractures and low magnesium levels with long-term use of nexium. . . let your doctor do his job. and you do yours. ask if nexium is right for you.
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and finally tonight, our bob woodruff is here with what grateful americans can do for those who served the country. more than 200,000 troops are expected to retire from the military this year, and many of them are looking for a friend and mentor in their new careers. and, one of them found the mentor of his dreams. our abc news series, "standing up for heroes." >> reporter: 32-year-old gabriel posey, a staff sergeant in the army, just returned from the sands of afghanistan. but now, here, in los angeles, he's about to get a huge surprise. what he knows is that he's been matched up with a mentor to help him get a start in the field he has dreamed about much of his life -- screenwriting. what he doesn't know is that his mentor is one of the biggest names in hollywood. >> your brothers were killed in
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combat. great thing about so many people in the military is, man, they are really good at solving problems. those people are worth their weight in precious metals. >> reporter: what would be the number one thing you would tell to gabriel about getting into the film industry? >> okay. you have got to say, i know who i am, i know what my skills are and i'm in this for -- i'm in this for the long haul. perseverance. it all comes down to that. >> reporter: i told gabriel that his mentor wasn't really well known. just someone with connections. i lied. i'm going to show you who this is. i think you'll be very happy to see who it is. >> oh! wow. no way. i love tom hanks! >> gabriel! how are you? what a pleasure. nice to see you. you have to call me tom. >> reporter: so, with a pot of tea, the sergeant got a chance to learn from this actor, writer, producer and more? >> have you ever tasted failure while working and how did you deal with it? >> oh, yeah.
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you as a writer, you are going to write things that no one is going to get or understand and you cannot let that get in your way. >> reporter: now, gabriel is making plans to move to hollywood, to stay in touch with his mentor and hopefully to fulfill his lifelong dream. bob woodruff, abc news, los angeles. >> i'm in the right place. i tell you that much. >> more about mentors and the troops at and we thank you for watching on this monday. "nightline" later. and here's a happy sight. the christmas tree lighting in downtown reno, nevada, courtesy of our abc affiliate, kolo-8 news now. and hello to everybody in reno, from us. and a good night to you.
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tonight a bizarre crime, a couple found bound and gagged in the street. new information from police now investigating a murder. >> a neighborhood dispute over the former oakland army base tonight objections people are raising over floornz a new jobs center. >> late word from the family of singer jenni rivera, dead in a plane crash, her brother is holding out hope. >> and a teenager tacked for wanting girls to attend schools. some people have taken up her cause. >> this street is where two people were found tied up and wounded, victims of a crime still unsolved tonight, still has not been explained, either. >> it is a puzzling history. who attacked and gagged and
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bound two young people, dumping them in the street near mcclairen park. one victim died from his injuries. we are live with the latest on this investigation. vic? >> that young victim is in intensive care here in the hospital fighting for her life. a police tell us they have yet to identify her or the male victim, they're waiting for the medical examiner to tell us what caused that young man's death.écçí÷ >> any time there are two victims gagged and bound in the street, left for dead, it probably happens in the movies a lot but in real life, very not seen this a lot. >> the two found by a passing driver on the 900 block of brusselses street at 8:30 last night. police say the man was in his early 20s. the female, in her late teens. the trauma was so severe,


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